But Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has backed the club’s transfer committee to press ahead with alternative targets as talks drag on.
United are frustrated with the slow progress in their pursuit of Sancho, with personal terms and agent fees a sticking point on top of Dortmund’s £108million valuation.
The 20-year-old remains Solskjaer’s outstanding target during this window – and the England international is said to have his heart set on a move to Old Trafford.
But it is understood he was one of a shortlist of up to five candidates capable of operating on the right of United’s attack.
Solskjaer has previously told executive vice chairman Ed Woodward to look no lower than his second choice target – but it’s understood multiple options are under consideration for what has been a problem position at United for some time.
Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc claimed on Monday that Sancho would be staying for the upcoming season after failing to secure a move before the club’s self-imposed deadline of August 10.
United have always considered that an artificial deadline and have continued to push for a breakthrough during negotiations with Sancho’s agent Emeka Obasi, who Dortmund instructed them to go through.
And their priority remains to reach an agreement over a deal that is likely to be the biggest of a window that has been depressed by the effects of coronavirus.
Solskjaer believes Sancho has the potential to become a superstar at Old Trafford, with the iconic No7 shirt waiting for him.
The Norwegian wants to add the former Manchester City academy graduate to a thrilling attack that already includes Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Mason Greenwood.
And the belief within United is that the player is equally as excited about a move despite this week speaking in glowing terms of life at Dortmund.